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June 2015 Policy Study, Number 15-6


The Nanny State Is Expanding And Private-Property Rights Are Decreasing


The Era of Big Data Is Here and It Will Control Us



One of the key “tools” in the AFFH regulation to be used by the regional committees are dot density maps showing the population and demographic makeup of areas.  The sample maps provided as templates take the data for every individual household in an area and aggregate it into one dot for every 10, 50, or 100 households of X type.  The maps generated include current and past racial and ethnicity clusters, as well as clusters on national origin, limited English proficiency, presence of public housing and Section 8 vouchers, housing-burdened households, school proficiency, jobs proximity, labor engagement, transit proximity, poverty exposure, environmental health hazards, and disability groupings by age ranges.[21] 


Under this regulation, whether or not a region is determined to be discriminating in housing will be based on the concentration patterns of each of the various groupings.  The acceptable, statistical variation – presumably based on standard deviations from the median – of types of people living in each area will be tracked and evaluated by HUD.  In order to be in compliance, the region must be taking specific steps to alter the housing patterns into an acceptable balance. 


The percentage of X type of people living in each subset area of the designated region will be dictated by the proportional numbers decided by HUD.  If your area has less than the acceptable percent and is not showing enough movement towards increasing that type of resident, in HUD regulator’s and bureaucrat’s opinions it may indicate systematic discrimination toward that group.   The local government may be fined or otherwise penalized and then must take specific actions to try to recruit more of that type of person.  The proposed regulation does not state what the correct statistical balance is.


For example, Dubuque, Clinton, and Davenport, Iowa, might be considered to be in the greater Chicago area.  As such, their housing balance must reflect the overall regional totals.  The regional commission, made up of a wide variety of special interest groups, mostly appointed individuals representing various demographic groups – not elected officials – will set targets for the desired percent of “types” of people to live in each area of the region.  These commissions will have little to no accountability to voters or property owners.


The first implementation of this proposed rule has been demonstrated in Dubuque over the last four years.  The results are still playing out, as well as the spending of thousands of dollars and staff hours to implement it. 




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